Buckingham Palace provided an update that the Queen will not go ahead with a number of planned virtual engagements while suffering from COVID-19. Just days after news broke that the 95-year-old monarch had tested positive for the virus, the palace has confirmed she is continuing to suffer from “mild” symptoms.
As such, she has chosen to cancel her planned virtual engagements for Tuesday, with no clear indication how long her hiatus will last. “As Her Majesty is still experiencing mild cold like symptoms she has decided not to undertake her planned virtual engagements today, but will continue with light duties,” a statement from the palace read.
The Queen had a number of engagements planned for this week, all of which would be carried out virtually due to her positive COVID-19 diagnosis. It’s understood that while her engagements for yesterday have been cancelled, events for the rest of the week may still go ahead, though concrete decisions will be made closer to the time. Though the statement did not suggest the Queen is suffering from any new or alarming COVID-19 symptoms, it has sparked fresh concerns for her health. The Queen has been managing a period of ill health since October last year, when she was hospitalized overnight for an undisclosed reason.
She returned to Windsor Castle soon after but was ordered to rest, cancelling a number of engagements and events in the months leading up to Christmas. The royal family’s annual holiday visit to Sandringham Estate was also cancelled, though it was understood to be a response to rising COVID-19 case numbers, not the Queen’s health. More recently, Her Majesty returned to light public duties where she has been photographed on multiple occasions using a cane — believed to have once belonged to Prince Philip. She also told onlookers at a small event that she has been struggling with her mobility, commenting that she “can’t move” too well anymore.
As the Queen approaches the one year anniversary of her late husband’s death, there is rising speculation about how the monarchy will handle the sad eventuality of her passing. As adored as she is, the Queen cannot live forever and when she does pass her son Prince Charles will take her throne as king. It’s a role he’s been preparing for for more than 70 years as heir apparent, and a transition that is clearly on the Queen’s mind.
On the 70th anniversary of her accession, the Queen announced her wish for Charles’ wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall to take the title of Queen Consort when Charles is king. Her statement served as a poignant reminder that her historic reign will one day come to an end, and with these ongoing health concerns, that day may come sooner than we like.
This article originally appeared on our sister site, Now to Love.